Milton Keynes pest controllers have dealt with the nest of a false widow spider (don’t think it ended well for the spiders) but believe there may be others. They are closely related to the black widow (the False Widow’s not the pest control officers).
The nest was found in Bletchley and officers warn the spiders give a bite which is not lethal but is painful.
Liam Mooney from Milton Keynes trading standards said “They won’t kill you but one person’s already had to go to hospital with symptoms including chest pain, nausea and vomiting.”
The small spiders are related to the black widow and look similar to them but do not have the distinctive red spot.
“Often in nature small things like these spiders carry a powerful punch and people should take precautions if they suffer a bite and go to hospital if they experience severe local pain, chest pains or nausea,” Mr Mooney said.
“The nest in Bletchley was behind a wooden panel and that’s the kind of environment these spiders like – or where there are old logs, leaves or damp places.”
The spiders are believed to have travelled to England on a boat and were first recorded more than 100 years ago in the South West.
“They are making their way eastwards as the weather gets better,” Mr Mooney said.
“The large cotton wool structure found at the nest site is full of eggs so there may be a lot of spiders in the vicinity so people should be on the alert especially if they have children or pets.”
“The spiders have larger fangs than other species and venom behind them. The bite is worse than a wasp sting and instant,” Mr Mooney said.